How to promote your printable products online
Have you ever wondered how to get more sales for your printable products? Promotion is key to sell more digital downloads. Read on to discover 11 ways to promote your printables products online…
As with any product-based business there is a marketing element to being a digital product designer. You’ll need to learn how to promote your designs if you want to win more customers and earn more money.
Luckily, being a printable designer is perfect for today’s internet-focused audience. Social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter provide the ideal places to promote your designs.
Below are eleven ideas to promote your printable products online.
How to promote your printable products to get more sales
1. Post in Facebook groups
Love it or hate it, there’s no denying that Facebook is here to stay. Designers all over the world are taking advantage of Facebook’s popularity by turning it into a way to promote their downloads.
The easiest way to do this is to join a couple of crafting Facebook groups and start sharing links to your products. As well as doing this, take the time to comment on other people’s posts and start building relationships.
If people start to see your name popping up all the time, they’ll begin engaging in conversations with you. Once they know who you are, they are far more likely to buy from you than if they had never heard your name before.
Before posting in a new group, be sure to read their ‘about’ section to make sure they allow promotional links. Many groups forbid members from posting links to their own products to stop them becoming overly promotional and they may ban you if you break their rules.
2. Post on Twitter
Twitter can be a fabulous place for promoting your card making downloads. The fast-paced nature of this social media site means that you can get away with posting multiple links to your products throughout the day.
Be careful to make at least half of your tweets non-promotional if you want to gain followers. Nobody wants to follow an account that just posts links to products.
Instead, start conversations with your followers, post updates on your day or what type of designs you are going to be working on over the next few weeks. Show that you are a real person rather than just another business account.
3. Create Pinterest boards and pin your products
Pinterest is SO popular for bloggers and printable product designers. It’s a website bookmarking website where you can save photos and website links to ‘boards’ so that other people can browse them. Think of it like a virtual noticeboard or photo album.
Creating a free Pinterest account and setting up boards for your products can help to get your downloads noticed. Be careful to only link to the preview images though – never upload your full-sized, unwatermarked designs as you don’t want people to be able to download them for free.
Not sure what Pinterest is all about? Check out my account and give me a ‘follow’!
4. Free advertising on Craftsuprint
Okay, so this one only works if you sell your printable products on Craftsuprint, but it’s a surefire way to get extra views on your designs.
Craftsuprint allow designers to advertise throughout their website. It’s completely free to do – it works on a credit system and you earn credits by doing things like uploading new designs and generally being active on the website.
Promoted designs show up at the top of categories or on search results pages. If someone searches for ‘birthday’ and your designs are shown prominently at the top of the page, they are far more likely to click through and purchase than if you were hidden away amongst hundreds of other designs.
5. Write a blog
Writing your own blog can be a time-consuming affair, but it’s a wonderful way of getting your designs noticed by both potential customers and search engines such as Google.
You could perhaps write stories about your designing exploits, share tales of what you have learned or what you’re working on, create round-up posts of your most popular designs or feature testimonials from past clients.
Want to write your own blog but need a website first? I can help with that.
6. Optimise your listings and keywords
When buyers search on Google, Etsy or any other website for a product to buy, they usually already have a vague idea of what they are looking for.
When uploading your printable products, think carefully about the title, description and keywords that you enter. Let’s look at two examples:
Birthday flowers design
Yellow pansies for Mum: Floral birthday A5 card front with decoupage
Which of those titles do you think would perform better in searches? Yup – it’s the second one! It’s jam-packed full of specific keywords that accurately describe that design. Using terms such as yellow, pansies, decoupage, Mum and A5 means that your design has a good chance of being found when any of those keyword phrases are searched for.
That being said, you should always write your titles for PEOPLE first and search engines SECOND. Don’t use silly titles such as “Yellow pansies flowers floral mum mother A5 decoupage 3D step by step” – that’s hugely off-putting for customers and may actually lose you sales because, well, it just doesn’t make sense!
7. Paid Google advertising
If you’re feeling adventurous, you might want to consider setting up a Google AdWords account. This allows you to have paid Google adverts that appear when people search for a word or phrase of your choosing – for example ‘printable planner or ‘colouring pages’.
Because Google advertising works on a bidding system, you may end up having to invest quite a serious amount of money to get a good return on investment (ROI) here, so maybe this is one to think about once you have established yourself as a designer and have some regular income coming in.
8. Promoted listings on Etsy
For those who sell on Etsy, you may wish to consider promoted listings. These work in a similar way to Google Ads where you bid on keywords that you want your products to appear for.
Etsy gives you statistics and analytics so that you can track your listings to see how many clicks they bring to your store. For more information, read Etsy’s guide to promoted listings.
9. Share photos of your products in use
Sharing real-life photographs of your products in use, either by you or your customers, goes a long way to build trust with potential customers. It allows them to imagine themselves using the product, and can help turn a casual browser into a customer.
For example, if you sell card making downloads then showing photos of actual cards from your designs is one of the best methods of promotion you can do. Seeing real-life cards helps potential customers truly understand what your design is all about and it can inspire them to make a card of their own.
If you see cards made from past customers with your designs, send them a message to ask if you can share their photo on your own website or social media platforms. Offer to give them credit for the photo and card, and perhaps offer them a small “thank you” in exchange for allowing you to use their image – for example they could select one of your other downloads which you would send to them for free.
10. Join forums in your niche
This is a bit of a long-game because most forums don’t allow you to self-promote. However, what they do allow is for you to add a link to your shop in your post signature and on your profile.
Find a forum in your niche (e.g. card making, fitness, mum life, etc) and sign up for an account. Post regularly on other people’s posts and provide useful and interesting responses. Try to start conversations and build relationships.
Get to know your target audience and they’ll get to know you to – and every time they read a comment that you’ve posted they’ll see your shop link in your signature.
11. Create an email list
This tip only really works if you have a website, blog or Facebook page where you can ask visitors to sign up to a mailing list.
Websites such as ConverKit can be used to create a list of subscribers that you can then regularly email whenever you release new products or when you have news to share such as the start of a sale in your store.
Once people have started to sign up to your mailing list, you’ve got a perfectly curated selection of potential customers that you can market to!
What’s the best way to get more sales on digital products?
With all the possible options to promote your printable products online, which ones should you choose?
Personally, I think promoting your products on Pinterest is one of the most effective ways to get more sales on your digital designs.
Also, creating a blog and posting useful content around the topics of your products can help to build trust and grow an audience. This helps with digital product sales as people are more likely to buy from you if you provide free value first so that they learn to trust you.
Posting in Facebook groups can also be very effective. I know of several very successful craft bloggers who often post photos of their blog projects in crafting groups on Facebook along with a link back to their post to encourage people to click through and read the post.
If you have any free printables then this technique may be more effective as people are more likely to click through to a free product from a Facebook group than a paid one, especially if they haven’t heard of you before.
Remember, people don’t like to realise they are being sold to! Subtle promotion is an art, but it’s a technique you need to grasp if you want to make the most of social media and get more sales on your printable products.